Text by Bhumika Vikam
“Art has the role in the education of helping children become like themselves instead of more like everyone else,” says Sydney Gurewitz Clemens. There is so much truth in this ‘not too prominent’ quote. But, what does art really mean?
We all have a common understanding of art as painting and sculptures. Even when we are asked to close our eyes and think about art, our visualisation would mostly be different forms of paintings, colours and so on. However, art is beyond just paintings and this common notion. Art is a feeling and it is also something that induces your feelings and helps you portray them on paper. Another common notion for art is that it is meant only for talented people, for prodigies who have magical fingers. Art is not just meant for magically fingered individuals, but art is even for tiny tots who have just learnt to draw lines and circles. In fact, art is truly very important and good for tiny tots.
Let us know why art is considered so essential for children:
Every child is imaginative and creative by birth. By creative, we do not refer to the common notion of creative which sees creative as a lavish creation of some new idea. Creativity is actually any process through which something new is produced. When we speak about creativity with regard to children, we highlight more on self-expression and not the end product made by the child.
Artwork allows little ones to explore their imagination, bring out their creativity and express themselves. They discover a lot more about themselves through art because they get to express themselves completely. When given an opportunity to express themselves fully, children begin to step into the exploration phase wherein they learn to explore more of themselves by learning about their feelings, strengths and interests.
Art is something which encourages all the developmental domains, and so comes the need to primarily see how art helps a child develop physically. While indulging in art, children use their fine motor skills by holding crayons, paintbrushes and creating something on paper. Art influences eye-hand coordination of children and helps future writing readiness mature.
Art powers a child’s emotional and social development in its own unique ways. There are some experiences which children cannot verbalize thoroughly. These experiences get a space to be rendered and it is art that aids this. Children are able to regulate their emotions with the help of art. Emotions of anger, sadness, excitement etc. can all be seen when children indulge in art. They can actually depict their emotions strongly on paper than verbally. Children reap a healthy sense of pride in themselves when they complete a particular artwork. This, in turn, boosts their self-esteem and confidence.
When children are a part of an art class or workshop, their social development cultivates. They learn to come together as a team with fellow pals, take responsibility for clean up and collaborate, discuss ideas. They learn to share through materials and ideas too.
Children learn the names of colours and shapes through creative art activities. They find out what happens when they mix two primary colours together and get a secondary colour. There is a good enough growth in their observational skills too because many a time children observe and then paint. This observation may be as simple as looking at a tree or a house, and then putting it on to paper in their own unique way. Thus comes in the scope of cognitive development. Art is often considered as a child’s first written language because the child learns to record a certain idea or perception and then is able to convey that through the help of art.
Hence, we can see how children increase their artistic knowledge, skills, and creativity while enhancing emotional, social, cognitive, and physical development as they participate in art.
They will always be surrounded by images and unique ideas. They develop a new eye or a new vision where they see things differently.
When the all-round development and growth of a child takes place efficiently, especially through something like art, then it will surely lead to an upbeat personal as well as academic progress.
It is thus essential to understand the true worth of art and creativity in every tiny tot’s life and give it the necessary push it requires. Let’s break the common myths of art discussed and let our children build and learn aesthetic appreciation.
MaryAnn Kohl quotes correctly, “Art is as natural as sunshine and as vital as nourishment.”
This is a part of our curated content for Dot-to-Dot Art School Children’s Exhibition held in November 2017. This content was a part of our talk for parents over a two-day art exhibition by children.
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